Ljubljana related

15 Sep 2020, 12:17 PM

STA, 15 September 2020 - The Ljubljana Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and the Guangdong University of Petrochemical Technology (GDUPT) have agreed to build an institute to research intelligent manufacturing methods of advanced materials in Guangdong Province, China.

According to the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, the Advanced Material Intelligent Manufacture Research Institute (AMIMRI) is to be set up by 2023 in a joint effort.

Last week, the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of Ljubljana and the Guangdong University of Petrochemical Technology signed an annex to the cooperation agreement they signed in 2018.

They committed to transferring existing knowledge between Slovenian and Chinese academic and industrial environments, building an experimental laboratory on the site of AMIMRI, the establishment of a doctoral study of mineral wool technologies, the establishment of joint Slovenian-Chinese research projects and the publication of the new institute's research results in scientific articles and patents.

According to the faculty, they also plan to research the mineral wool market in China and establish networks with new companies, which will be able to achieve a significant improvement in technology development in cooperation with the AMIMRI.

The Chinese partner has committed to provide EUR 300,000 for the work of Slovenian researchers over a period of three years, as well as EUR 250,000 for the material costs of building the institute.

The Faculty of Mechanical Engineering added that representatives of two manufacturers of mineral wool insulation products were also present at the virtual signing of the annex last Wednesday, and they expressed great interest in cooperation.

25 Aug 2020, 21:34 PM

The University of Ljubljana (Univerza v Ljubljani) has issued a warning that a number of individuals, the majority from India, have been sent fake letters of acceptance, along with a request for tuition to be paid.

If you did not apply to the University of Ljubljana, then any acceptance letter you receive is false. If you did apply but the letter you received seems suspicious, then you’re advised to look out for these four warning signs:

  • Does the letter ask you to send money to certain account? The University never sends letters that ask this.
  • Is the name of the faculty or academy correct? There’s a list of the official names here if you are not sure.
  • Are any email addresses for the University correct? All official email addresses have the suffix @uni-lj.si.
  • Is the letter signed by Vice-Dean Gabor Janos Vamos? The University has Vice-Rectors, and no Janos Vamos works there.

The University also provides two examples of false letters, PDF form (False letter 1; False letter 2).

15 Jul 2020, 15:04 PM

STA, 15 July 2020 - One hundred years to the day the first ever doctorate was awarded at a Slovenian university. Ana Mayer received a doctorate in chemistry after completing at the newly-established University of Ljubljana her chemistry studies which she started in Vienna before the collapse of Austria-Hungary.

Mayer, born in 1895 in Lože near Vipava, south-western Slovenia, started studying chemistry and physics at the Vienna university in 1914.

She was forced to leave in 1918 when the university decided after the end of WWI that all Slavic students must leave it, according to the kvarkadabra.net website.

Mayer continued her studies after Ljubljana got the first university in 1919, earning the doctorate on 15 July 1920 as the first student and the first women.

Even before her doctorate, she started working at the university as an assistant at the Chemistry Institute, as the first woman to teach at the university.

Although she wanted to continue the academic career, she quit in 1922 for what could be a lack of funding at the institute, her marriage to Evgen Kansky, a professor of medicine, or because she was pregnant.

She thus went into business, setting up a company which became synonymous with quality chemical substances and pursued a successful business career.

She also established a factory of diethyl ether and solvents for varnishes in Podgrad near Ljubljana, laying the foundations for the chemical and pharmaceutical industries in Slovenia. The factory was first seized by the Nazis and then nationalised by the communist authorities in 1948.

Ana Mayer-Kansky had three children and died in 1962, whereas her husband, who was forced to retire in the autumn of 1945, died 15 years after her.


A painting of Ana Mayer-Kansky by Henrika Šantel,1932. Source: Wikipedia, publc domain

According to Slovenia's Statistics Office (SURS), almost 11,600 students have earned their doctorates in Slovenia since the country became independent in 1991.

There were over 3,300 doctoral students in the 2019/2020 academic year and in 2019 there were almost 13,200 persons with a PhD in Slovenia - a mere 0.6% of the population.

There was at least one person with a PhD in all but five Slovenian municipalities, while 18 municipalities had more than 100.

Ljubljana as the largest city and home to the oldest and largest Slovenian university had more than 5,530 doctors of science, which was 42% of all doctors in Slovenia.

The number of residents with a PhD in Slovenia is increasing, having risen by 585 a year over the past five years, according to SURS.

22 Apr 2020, 10:49 AM

STA, 21 April 2020 - Slovenia's leading telecommunication providers are all opening shop again this week to join a number of retailers and other services providers that reopened on Monday after five weeks of coronavirus lockdown.

Telemach already started reopening its shops on Monday, AI Slovenija opened all of them today, T-2 plans a gradual reopening starting Wednesday, while Telekom Slovenije is to start welcoming customers at its major centres on Thursday after it has already opened some of its smaller branch offices.

All the providers stressed they would implement protective measures, including by reserving the first and final business hours for vulnerable groups.

In a major sign of the easing of the coronavirus epidemic and the lockdown restrictions associated with it, DIY stores, car showrooms, stores selling bicycles, technical goods and furniture, dry cleaners and some repair shops, including tyre replacement shops, are resuming their operations this week.

As a growing number of businesses reopen, passenger transport organised by business subjects or local communities to bring employees to work and back has been allowed too.

However, protective measures remain in force for all stores, including the obligatory wearing of masks or some other face coverings, hand sanitising, airing of premises and allowing 20 square metres per customer.

The government imposed a temporary ban on most retail establishments in mid March to contain the coronavirus epidemic.

Only grocery stores, pharmacies, banks, post offices, petrol stations, news stands and stores selling agricultural products remained open until pet food shops were added to the exemptions from 21 March and florist shops and nurseries from 3 April, along with construction works not involving contacts with customers.

Yet more services will be available from 4 May, with the reopening of hair salons, beauty parlours, dog and cat grooming salons and shops of up to 400 m2 sales space, except for those in shopping centres.

Ljubljana University planning exit strategy, lowering credit points threshold

STA, 21 April 2020 - The senate of the University of Ljubljana has called on its members to adjust the conditions required for students to advance to their next year of studies given that the teaching process has been disrupted despite a successful switch to remote learning. While the plan is to continue with remote classes, an exit strategy is in the making.

University of Ljubljana Chancellor Igor Papič told the STA on Tuesday that along with enabling students to advance normally by lowering the credit points threshold, it was equally important that students do not lose the chance to enrol again in the same year, as the loss of student status would affect their social situation.

He explained that the plan was to continue with remote classes also after 3 May where only possible, so that students are not exposed to risk unnecessarily.

Laboratory classes present an issue that will be hard to solve until restrictions are lifted, while another pending problem are the approaching summer exams that are taken by over 100 students simultaneously.

The faculties that are part of Slovenia's largest and oldest university have however been urged to prepare for a gradual lifting of restrictions, and Papič announced an exit strategy would be drawn up.

He meanwhile assessed the remote learning system that has been set up as successful, allowing around 85% of the programme to be covered. Also running successfully are oral defences of dissertations, with over 130 conducted remotely so far.

29 Jan 2020, 13:41 PM

The other week we presented a review of recent scientific research and discoveries that were made in Slovenia, so this week we thought we’d point to some of the work on the humanities that you can find online.

The Faculty of Arts at the University of Ljubljana (Filozofska fakulteta Univerze v Ljubljani) currently publishes 15 academic journals, and makes each edition freely available as a PDF. These include Acta Neophilologica (promoting scholarly articles on English and American literature, on other literatures written in English as well as on German and Romance literatures), Documenta Praehistorica (a yearly journal of archaeological interdisciplinary scientific research), Keria (covering all fields of Greek and Latin studies), The Musicological Annual (with publishing papers from various fields of musicology and ethnomusicology), Slovenščina 2.0: empirical, applied and interdisciplinary research (presenting theoretical and interdisciplinary research on the Slovene language, and perhaps most interesting to readers of TSN) and Verba Hispanica (on linguistics and literature in Spanish). The full list is here, and although not every article is published in English there’s plenty to explore if you’re looking for some insight into what’s happening at this part of the University.

Publishing in English at the University of Ljubljana

Beyond journals the Faculty also publishes books. Again, not everything is in English – this is the University of Ljubljana – but there’s plenty to browse and PDF versions are available for free.

To give some taste of the variety, there’s 101 ENGLISH TIPS: A Quick Guide to Avoiding “Slovenglish” (plus volume 2) in the English Language & Literature section, Sounds of Attraction: Yugoslav and Post-Yugoslav Popular Music in Ethnology & Cultural Anthropology, and Dictionary of Modern Slovene: Problems and Solutions in Translation Studies, Among the Slavs in Slavistics, with the full list of publications here.

10 Dec 2019, 08:39 AM

STA, 9 December 2019 – The British business newspaper the Financial Times has ranked the University of Ljubljana's School of Economics and Business among the 95 best business schools in Europe for the second consecutive time [at 89]. The faculty sees this achievement as a recognition of its quality in the international arena.

The Financial Times has thus put Slovenia on the map of top-quality business education, said the Ljubljana-based faculty when it first made the cut.

The ranking requires having at least one of the top international accreditations - the AACSB and EQUIS-accredited Ljubljana school has both as well as the AMBA accreditation, while its International Master in Business programme has been ranked as one of the best business programmes.

The faculty pointed out that its students had at their disposal exchange programmes at five foreign business schools which had also made the grade, including French KEDGE, Norwegian BI, French Audencia, Portuguese ISCTE and French ESSCA.

The Ljubljana School of Economics and Business also hosts a PhD summer school programme along with the Swiss St. Gallen University business school, which traditionally ranks among top four schools according to the Financial Times. It also takes part in the EUTOPIA partnership of six European universities.

All our stories about the University of Ljubljana are here, while the full FT rankings can be found here


03 Dec 2019, 19:33 PM

STA, 3 December 2019 - The University of Ljubljana, Slovenia's largest institution of higher learning, is celebrating its centenary with a series of events that culminated on Tuesday, the day exactly 100 years ago when the first lecture was delivered in the Slovenian language.

The university awarded out a doctorate to Kenneth Brian Frampton of Columbia University in New York today and will hold a special ceremony in the evening when it will receive the Order of Merit for Distinguished Service from President Borut Pahor.

The university started out with five founding members - the faculties of arts, medicine, law, technology and theology - after King Alexander signed a law establishing what was then the University of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes in Ljubljana.

The first lecture was delivered in the building that remains the seat of the university to this day, the former Carniolan Provincial Court in the centre of Ljubljana, by the linguist Franc Ramovš and the topic was the historical grammar of the Slovenian language.

In the first academic year the university boasted almost a thousand students and by the start of the Second World War enrolment had increased to almost 2,500.

While male students far outnumbered women in the first years, the first person ever to get a doctorate was a woman, Ana Mayer, who received her PhD in chemistry in July 1920.

The university continued to grow after the Second World War and by the 1960s it already had nine faculties. In 1979 it was renamed to Edvard Kardelj University, in honour of the Slovenian Communist ideologue, but in 1990 it reverted to the University of Ljubljana.

After independence, especially under the 1993 higher education act, it transformed into what it describes as a "classical European university," with greater emphasis on scientific research and greater autonomy.

It presently comprises 26 faculties and academies and its 38,000-plus students are enrolled in 158 bachelors', 196 masters' and 21 doctoral programmes ranging from the arts to social sciences, natural sciences, engineering, medicine and law.

"A hundred years later we are a university that has gone beyond national borders and helps build the European university of the future," Chancellor Igor Papič told the STA.

He said the University of Ljubljana ranks among the top three percent of universities in the world, which was "probably unimaginable a century ago, when we were fighting to get the university in the first place and faced constant pressure that it be shut down."

In the latest Shanghai Rankings, considered a benchmark for higher education institutions, the university ranks 501-600, down from 401-500 last year.

At the ceremony today Papič said that the university was "in excellent shape". While it wants better financing, it is glad it does not currently have problems paying salaries. The main challenge at the moment is securing funds for the construction of several new faculty buildings and cutting-edge research equipment.

14 Nov 2019, 14:52 PM

Two law students from the University of Ljubljana, Katja Grünfeld and Iva Ramuš Cvetkovič, beat more than 100 teams from around the world in the Manfred Lachs Moot Court competition in Washington, DC. In this they put their knowledge of space law and international public law. into practice in order to win a lawsuit on behalf of a hypothetical state for the unlawful appropriation of a lunar base.

The teams put their cases before judges from the International Court of Justice in the championship, which was held between 21 and 25 October as part of the 70th International Astronautical Congress. The team from Slovenia – which consisted of Katja Grünfeld and Iva Ramuš Cvetkovič, Rok Kljajič as coach, and Vasilka Sancin as mentor – had already won the European heats, beating a team from the University of Vienna in the final.

The Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court is a competition in space law and international public law organised by the International Institute of Space Law and the European Centre for Space Law. The finals in Washington were in the form of simulated proceedings before the International Court of Justice in the Hague, and with both a written part and a live hearing.

Each team prepared two written memorandums, one for the plaintiff and one for the defendant. In these they presented legal arguments and facts supporting the individual claims addressed to the International Court of Justice in connection with a hypothetical case.

The second-placed team, winners of the African heat, was from the International Law Students Association (ILSA) of the University of Calabar, Nigeria, which included Ebruka Nelly-Helen Neji and Ushie Augustine Eneji.

26 Aug 2019, 19:23 PM

August 26, 2019

A summer school of philosophy titled “Fail better!” began this Monday with a week of lectures from Slovenia’s most prominent thinkers, also known as the “Ljubljana school of psychoanalysis”. In t week that follows, Mladen Dolar, Alenka Zupančič and Slavoj Žižek will present their views on the foundations of their thought as well as their current work to a maximum of 120 participants from 17 countries, most of whom are coming from Denmark and Germany. The three will meet to give lectures at their Alma Mater, the Faculty of Arts of the University of Ljubljana, and the working language of all the events will be English.

Žižek will present a series of lectures titled “Hegel with Neuralink”, which take as their entry point “Neuralink, an American neuro-technological company, founded by Elon Musk and eight others, dedicated to developing a mind-machine interface (MMI)”.

All our stories on Žižek are here, while a list of 70 quotes for his 70th birthay is here

Alenka Zupančič’s lectures are titled “The Real and Its Passions”, which as their “starting and focal point take the concept of the Real that emerged in psychoanalytic theory (Freud, Lacan)”.

Mladen Dolar will be speaking in a series called “What, If Anything, Is the Other?”, which “will attempt to explore the psychoanalytic notion of the big Other, given the paradox that on the one hand it is absolutely necessary and on the other, according to Lacan, it is lacking – how can it be both at the same time?.”

The University of Ljubljana is currently marking it’s 100 anniversary of existence which is being celebrated with 100 various events throughout the year. The summer school of philosophy is perhaps one of the most significant of events due to the global prominence of the authors who are going to present their thoughts together at the place of the beginning of their studies.

For details click here.

14 Aug 2019, 13:00 PM

STA, 13 August 2019 - Japanese and Slovenian partners signed two agreements in Ljubljana on Tuesday that pave the way for cooperation in development and research of robotised rehabilitation devices.

Fujita Health University signed one of the accords with the University of Ljubljana and the other with the Ljubljana-based URI Soča Rehabilitation Institute, and Toyota Motor Corporation.

The signing was attended by Economy Ministry State Secretary Aleš Cantarutti, who praised it as a major paving stone for further cooperation between Slovenia and Japan in the field.

"Cooperation between Slovenia and Japan has seen tremendous progress in recent years," said Cantarutti, praising the agreements as an "excellent example of cooperation between science and research and business", and a new opportunity to upgrade medical rehabilitation robotics.

Bilateral cooperation was also praised by Japanese Ambassador to Slovenia Masaharu Yoshida, who noted that Fujita Health University was a leading institution in the field in Japan. The university operates Japan's largest university hospital, treating 1.83 million patients a year.

"The agreement signed today will allow us to find a common path in development of rehabilitation robots and, above all, to put them on the market," said Robert Cugelj, director general of URI Soča.

The institute's main goal is to get its expertise and technology into the real world, and sell it. "In this way we generate value added mainly for patients, both those from Slovenia and elsewhere," said Cugelj.

The head of the institute's research and development department, Zlatko Matjačić, presented two projects that formed the basis for cooperation.

One is a rehab robot to train patients how to maintain balance and movement coordination during walking, which is being developed by the Slovenian institute, and the other is a robot developed by Fujita Health University and Toyota.

These are two exoskeletal devices focusing on two different areas. "The Japanese have focused on the leg's function and support during walk, while we're focusing on the integrated function of balance and coordination," Matjačić said.

They would now like to combine their expertise, technology and experience into a now concept to help in the rehabilitation of patients after stroke.

Fujita Health University professor and president Eiichi Saitoh was happy that the university was linking with the world's leading rehabilitation institutions, expressing belief that expertise is expanded and enriched through such cooperation.

Keisuke Suga of Toyota's BR-Medicare hailed the new partnership, which said would help implement Toyota's vision of mobility for all. The department headed by Suga specializes in development and production of devices used in patient rehabilitation.

The Japanese delegation already met Health Ministry State Secretary Simona Repar Bornšek on Monday and will be received along with URI Soča officials by President Borut Pahor on Wednesday.

All our stories on Japan are here, while those on robotics are here

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